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The Arcanist

Image by Jared Evans


One thing Altair truly missed about the desert was the sky at night,

A fantastically clear picture of the universe could be seen, clear as day, cast across the vault of the heavens in a luminous arc that could only be the work of Creation itself.

The old arcanist had an eye for the deft hand of a masterworker in any artifice,

And in the stars he felt he could see the genius of one such as whom no mortal could contend with.

The wisdom of Being.

The quiet grace of Becoming.

The great unknown void of Dying.

But stars were things glowing bright which could be known. And O how he wished he could visit them one day… perhaps his great grandchildren…


At any rate, in these tropics it rained so often, that at night much of the time the glory of the galaxy would be hidden behind clouds,

Much to the consternation of Altair.

But it was hard to look a gift horse in the mouth, for here, there was water. Falling in droves from the sky, filling up the plants with life, engorging streams, rivers, ponds.

It was truly a blessing to this old desert rat, he thought, and, like a few others of his kind, escaped on a raft. How lucky…


As it often does with parents, his reverie was broken by the voice of a son:

“Father, I haven’t been able to get the tram working to Hianu ― could you help me fuss with it this afternoon?”

After a brief moment of reflection, Altair responded:

“Of course, dear Debaran. I built the damn thing ― if I couldn’t rebuild it with my eyes shut I wouldn’t be worth a tinker’s cuss to an arcanist, ah?”

“O don’t be so humble” replied his son slyly.

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